A social media presence is one of the most effective weapons in your marketing arsenal. Social media platforms are wonderful places to connect meaningfully with your target audience, grow your brand and earn lasting customer loyalty.
Different social platforms lend themselves to different target audiences. So, depending on your business, some social channels will suit you better than others. Join us as we look at the social platforms with the most potential for different types of business. That way, you can ensure that you choose the best social media channels for marketing to your audience.
Professional services encompasses everyone from accountants and solicitors to project managers and marketing consultants. Professional services can be aimed at either the B2C or B2B markets. As such, the best social media channels for businesses like these may not be immediately obvious.
Broadly speaking, however, Facebook is a good place to start. It has over a billion users, and it’s completely free to set up a Facebook page for your business. Likewise, targeted Facebook ads are typically more cost-effective than Adwords campaigns.
Twitter is also an excellent channel for growing your business. Not only is it a cost-effective channel in which to run ads, but it’s also a great forum for conversation with clients and prospects. This enables you to share tips, guidance and blog posts from your website.
HRC (Hotels, Restaurants and Cafes)
The hospitality, food and beverage industries are all about presentation. Therefore, it makes sense to use visually-led channels to entice new prospects. Think sumptuous images of food, drinks or accommodation.
Instagram is an excellent choice, especially if you’re targeting a young, affluent and aspirational audience and/or want to turn social influencers into brand advocates.
However, the power of video marketing for this vertical cannot be overlooked. YouTube has huge potential for selling to your target audience. It is used by 49% of UK and Irish consumers and is very popular with millennial, Gen Z, Gen X and baby boomer audiences alike.
Retailers and eCommerce stores
When it comes to retail, whether you are a brick-and-mortar or online store, you can use social platforms to build your brand, interact with customers and prospects, and even sell directly to consumers without them leaving their preferred social media apps.
Social commerce sales are on the up, and expected to reach almost $3,000 BN globally by 2026. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok all have social commerce functionalities, whereby users can make purchases from your online store in-app.
Businesses should also consider adding Pinterest to their social media repertoire. Especially if young women feature prominently in your target demographics. A visually-led platform, Pinterest can help you to showcase your product range beautifully. However, it’s also a platform that’s extremely rich in buyer intent. 83% of users admit to making purchases based on the content they saw from brands on this channel.
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As spring approaches, the UK festival scene prepares to offer once-in-a-lifetime experiences. The festival circuit combines unforgettable musical acts with all kinds of other business opportunities, including food, drinks, and shopping, as well as workshops and classes.
Needless to say, festival marketing is all about the experience. It should lean heavily on visual platforms like Instagram, Tik Tok, YouTube and Snapchat. The best social media channels for marketing in this context are primarily aimed at a younger and actively engaged audience that wants to share their own experiences with your brand at their favourite festivals.
Consumer-facing businesses need to focus their efforts on understanding how consumers use social media. B2B companies, however, need to target key decision-makers within organisations that may not have much time or attention to spare. As such, the best B2B social media channels are those that facilitate shorter and more concise messaging.
LinkedIn is the most obvious choice. As well as allowing for micro-blogging via status updates, it also allows users to share long-form thought leadership content for users to read when they have a coffee break. Twitter and Facebook can also be useful in a B2B context as they are quick and easy to check, affordable to advertise on and make it quick and easy to share useful content.
What are the best social media channels for my business?
The best way to promote a business with social media is to identify the platforms that best align with your target audience, your business identity and your goals. We have suggested some potentially useful social channels for different verticals, but only you can decide which ones are best for your business.
Some things that you should consider include:
Who is your audience?
Take some time to reacquaint yourself with your customer profiles. Do some research into the social channels that your target demographic currently uses.
What are your goals?
Any social campaign should start out with clear and definable goals. These will make it easier to determine which are the best social media channels for your business’ specific objectives.
If you’re looking to increase brand awareness, Facebook and Twitter are fairly reliable. However, if you’re targeting a younger niche audience, Tik Tok or Instagram may be a better choice.
LinkedIn is a great choice for B2B lead generation, while Facebook and Twitter ads can also be cost-effective ways to generate new leads
If you want to increase sales or boost revenues, choose a channel that facilitates social commerce like Pinterest, Facebook or Instagram.
What channels are your competitors using?
If you’re still unsure which social channels your company should use, it may be worth seeing which platforms your competitors are using. Furthermore, take a look at whether they’re creating platform-specific content for different channels or posting the same content on different social channels.
What sort of content do you want to create?
Perhaps the best way to promote your business on social media is to focus primarily on the kind of content you want to create. Do you want to create compelling videos that engage prospects whose time and attention are limited? If so, YouTube, Instagram, and Snapchat are excellent platforms to showcase your content. Or do you want to create more long-form thought leadership content like white papers or ebooks? In that case, LinkedIn is perfect for engaging business decision-makers. If you’re more focused on delivering image-based content, Instagram and Pinterest are the best places to do it.
How many channels can your team manage?
Although businesses should be selective in the platforms they use, that doesn’t mean they should limit themselves to a single social channel. Businesses should be realistic about how much time and effort they can dedicate to maintaining an active presence on their chosen social channels, preferably while developing platform-specific content that plays to the inherent strength of the channels they use.
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